Birthday Boy (Movie Thoughts: Henry Gamble’s Birthday Party)

Henry-Gamble-PosterThere’s a lot of ambition in Stephen Cone’s film ‘Henry Gamble’s Birthday Party.’ The film centers around Henry, and the action all happens in one day, during the party for his seventeenth birthday. Surrounded by a his family and friends, Henry’s celebration brings out issues to characters around him. He is being brought up with church as a big part of his life, but we see in him and the characters around him the struggle to reconcile how they live their lives versus teh hypocrisy of religious institutions. The film is mostly subtle – we feel these people’s emotions by what they do not say, but at the same time, Cone does not strike a fair balance as some points are hammered in our faces. Cole Doman, in his film debut, supplies sensitivity in his role, and is effective especially when he is conveying repressed sexual tension. Hey we have all been there and can identify in his plight. There can sometimes be a lot of ‘nothing is happening’ here, but when it does, you cannot help but feel affected by them. I think this is worth a gamble.

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